After weight loss, obese children experienced improvements in both metabolic parameters and sleep-disordered breathing, according to data presented at the American Thoracic Society 2012 International Conference.
This finding confirms the links between metabolic dysregulation, sleep-disordered breathing and obesity, researchers in Belgium concluded.
Eighty-four obese children aged 10 to 18 years were recruited. All followed a treatment program with diet, increased physical activity and psychological support. Participants underwent baseline sleep screening and were enrolled in a control study if they were diagnosed with sleep-disordered breathing after 4 to 6 months. Researchers performed a fasting blood assay at baseline and after 4 to 6 months.
Mean BMI at baseline was 36.4. Overall, 44% of participants were diagnosed with sleep-disordered breathing. Study results showed that respiratory disturbance index was correlated with HDL (P=.002), aspartate aminotransferase (P=.003) and alanine aminotransferase (P=.001), but not with glucose, triglycerides and total cholesterol.
After the weight loss program, mean BMI decreased to 29.2 and only 8% of participants continued to have residual sleep-disordered breathing. In addition, all metabolic parameters improved after weight loss. Aspartate aminotransferase and alanine aminotransferase improved after weight loss parallel with an improvement in oxygen saturation during sleep, while HDL mainly improved with lowering BMI.
“The association between sleep-disordered breathing and metabolic parameters in children remains controversial,” Stijn Verhulst, MD, MSc, PhD, coordinator of the pediatric sleep lab at the Antwerp University Hospital, Belgium, said in a press release. “Because of the high dropout rate after 6 months and the relatively limited number of subjects with residual sleep apnea, these findings need to be confirmed in a larger study. Furthermore, it remains important to study the mechanisms linking sleep-disordered breathing with these metabolic parameters in obese teens and to study the long-term effects of sleep-disordered breathing on future metabolic and CV morbidity.”
For more information:
- Verhulst S. Abstract #30317. Presented at: American Thoracic Society 2012 International Conference; May 18-23, 2012; San Francisco.
Dr. Verhulst reports no relevant financial disclosures.